News Archives: January 2011
Ostrava in the Czech Republic, June 27 has been added to the tour. That's the second concert in the Czech Republic.
Update: A third concert has been added in Norway: July 29, Rådhusplassen, Haugesund
Check Roxette.se for tickets.
(Updated) - This weekend Roxette's forthcoming album Charm School leaked from French online store Qobuz which put up snippets of all songs from both CDs. Fans were fast and recorded them. Subsequently the snippets have been removed on EMI's request although the snippets are now all over YouTube and this reporter thinks that EMI is fighting a losing battle. Judging from the circa 30 second long snippets, fans are in for a treat!
Written by Lars-Erik_Olson on January 21, 2011 to Roxette. Source: ZDF.
German fans have long hoped that Roxette would be a guest on the televison show "Wetten, dass…" Well, their dream has come true. Roxette will be part of the next show on February 12th, according to the broadcasting company ZDF. Roxette is expected to perform "She's Got Nothing On (But the Radio)" along with a medley of other hits. Among the other artists to perform are Take That.
At least in the past, one of the conditions to perfom at 'Wetten, dass…' is that the featured song has never been perfomed in Europe before. Although its popularity has faded somewhat, 'Wetten, dass…' still reaches a huge audience and is the biggest Saturday night show on the German television landscape. For Roxette, this is an opportunity to step into the spotlight in Germany again.
RoXoR contributed to this article.
Written by roxeteer on January 20, 2011 to Roxette.
(Updated) - Mobile Roadie is releasing an official Roxette app for Android, BlackBerry and iPhone.
Official Roxette app! Stay up to date with all the latest news from Marie and Per. Sing along to your favourite tracks with lyrics
Connect with other fans and share your favourite Roxette stories, post photos and discuss the tour.
The Android version is already available (but on hold) on the Android Market, but we'll still have to wait for the iPhone version to appear on the iTunes Store.
Update: The app is now available on iTunes. AndroidZoom has screenshots.
MILAN - Sergio Staffieri, a writer who contributes reviews to the Italian music site Accordo.it, was somehow able to listen to an advance copy of Charm School and has submitted what appears to be one of the very first reviews of Roxette's new album. Our reporter Paulo Kaltenhauser provides this translation:
By Sergio Staffieri
Roxette used to be for many years one of the best European pop rock groups, coming from Sweden and placing an epic song like “It Must Have Been Love” into the Pretty Woman soundtrack.
With time, the two (Marie Fredriksson and Per Gessle) managed to find a balance and bring out all the components of their own style: the Beatlesian influences, the ballads mostly for female voice, the rock songs (Per Gessle, the main author, has always given space to his beloved instrument, even when he used to sing about loving the “sound of crashing guitars”) and curious pastiches bound more to the eighties both for sound and intention.
Between the early and the mid-nineties they came out with three albums (Joyride, Tourism [which I think is one of the best albums of that period] and Crash! Boom! Bang!) which definitely blessed them, and then – as often happens in these cases – they slowed down and took a break.
Today, ten years after the last album, Charm School is released (EMI). All of the songs are written by Per Gessle and show, it’s unavoidable, some good points together with some attempts to be (ironically or not, we're not allowed to know) “à la page” or, on the other side, “retro”. There’s always the usual alternation of songs given to his and her voice, their choruses and the mix of the two voices outstanding still today. When Gessle doesn't incline to youthfulness or to pander (some sounds, some episodes like “Only when I Dream,” the electro-funky “She’s Got Nothing On (But The Radio), or the closer “Sitting on Top of the World”), he proves once again to be one of the greatest rock assimilators and revisors, with enviable mimetic abilities.
Take as an example the first two songs: “Way Out” sung by him and “No One Makes It On Her Own,” where he looks to a Dylan's America through a George Harrison filter. The first one, starting with an acoustic mood – almost country – turns then more electric, with nice guitar sections. The second one, sung by her, again veined with country and with a piano, features a nice Harrisonian solo. Then there are the classic Roxette songs like “Speak To Me” and “I’m Glad You Called,” which has an acoustic rhythm a bit reminiscent of their classic “Crash! Boom! Bang!” … the six-eight soul of “In My Own Way” and timeless pop songs like “Dream On,” with its twelve string and harpsicord … and a British-school jewel “After All” that show the true strength of the duo: songs the stick inside your head and never come out.
LONDON - In a release issued by EMI Music today, confirmation is given that the European launch of Charm School will be on 14 February, while the UK will see a spring launch.
As we approach the release of their first new studio album in a decade, Roxette have just released the video to their new single, "She’s Got Nothing On (But the Radio)".
The European release date for the top-selling Swedish duo’s new album, Charm School, is February 14. In the UK the album and single will be out in the spring.
The official Roxette Facebook site is now live as well which you can check out here.
"Australia is definitely releasing Charm School, both versions of it" says Mark Holland, A&R rep at EMI Australia. "We are definitely putting some promotion into this album," he continues.
Marks also tells this reporter that there will be features in News Ltd Sunday papers, reviews to run in newspapers, women's magazines and the weeklys like Women's Weekly, NW, Who, Grazia etc. News Ltd. is owned by Rupert Murdoch and is the most read newspaper franchise in Australia.
Furthermore the single is being serviced to radio this week, so Mark hopes we'll be hearing it on the waves soon! Charm School is slated for release February 11.
More info will soon be available.
The release states, "The new album, which will be released on EMI worldwide (excluding the U.S.), will feature twelve songs described as 'updated classic Roxette' including the singles "Way Out" and "Sitting On Top Of The World."
Update: A source The Daily Roxette has been in contact with says that these songs are not single candidates at all.
The new "She's Got Nothing On (But The Radio)" video is now available online on Roxette Official Facebook page and on YouTube. The video features Per and Marie singing in front of a bright white background, as well as people having a house party.
The video is directed by Mats Udd and produced by Rebecca Jemdahl Tepavac. The cinematographer of the video is Petrus Sjövik.
NEW YORK - According to an article appearing today on the website of Music Week, Roxette has signed a North American administration deal with Kobalt Music Group, a leading global independent music publisher with close ties to Sweden. Kobalt will manage – in North America where Roxette Recordings' contract with EMI Music Publishing does not apply – copyright administration and creative licensing services. Although it is not a record label deal, it would appear to be one more indication (in addition to Per's comment to TDR during our recent interview) that the USA might see a release of the new album Charm School.
"The agreement is the first of the new year for the company and as part of the move the publisher will represent Roxette for sync in films, TV, gaming and ringtones. The deal will cover the release of the band’s new album which is set for release next month."
Rebekah Alperin, a senior vice president at Kobalt, tells TDR that they will be actively promoting Roxette's music for use in movie and TV soundtracks, and in television commercials. "That's what we do," she says.
Written by tevensso on January 13, 2011 to Releases. Source: Roxette.se.
"She's Got Nothing On (But the Radio)" will be released on Roxette's Facebook page tomorrow, Friday 14. The video featuring Elin Aram as well as Roxette has been directed by Mats Udd and is supposed to have "lots of blood and nudity and murder" in it, according to Per. We'll see about that…
This reporter was thrilled to see that "She's Got Nothing On (But The Radio)" is listed in the "New & Noteworthy" section of iTunes in Australia when he logged onto the site today. Also here in Oz on bigpond.com/music you can buy the song as a gift and have it emailed to a friend… great way to spread the single!
LONDON - In a rather unique combination of both tech review and music review, CNET UK – a popular site that provides product reviews, software downloads, and tech news – published a review today of a Logitech product called Squeezebox that makes special mention of Roxette and the fact that they have a new single out!
"It's a good day for Swedish music," writes Rich Trenholm on the site's Crave blog. "Not only do Roxette have a new single out – it's called She's Got Nothing On But the Radio – but Spotify has a new main squeeze."
Then, at the end of the short review, he provides the lyrics to the chorus and invites his readers to sing along:
All together now: "She's got nothing on but the radio (Radio!) / It's a passion play / And like the break of day / She takes my breath away!" Ah Roxette, we have missed you.
CNET owns and operates many other leading entertainment, news and information sites. They have a large international footprint, particularly in the U.S. and China.
You can read the entire Crave blog entry here.
Editor's Note: By the way, it was a passion for both technology and Roxette – along with the ability to write well – that was the catalyst that caused our publisher, Visa Kopu, to launch The Daily Roxette so many years ago. Seems like he and Mr. Trenholm have a lot in common! —LEO
Fans have been hopeful for years that with Marie's recovery from cancer, that Per and Marie would reactivate Roxette: take the stage again… perhaps tour… and if all that wasn't possible, at least get into a recording studio and release new material. It turns out that all of these wishes are coming true, and today marks another milestone in the duo's career with the release of the new single "She's Got Nothing On (But the Radio)" from the forthcoming album Charm School.
The Daily Roxette has learned from one of our readers in Oz that the single is available now via iTunes in Australia, which deserves special mention only in that Australia has been one of the question marks as far as release plans and tour dates are concerned. There are other such "questionable" countries as well, including the United States where Roxette enjoyed truly remarkable chart success with four Billboard #1 singles. The track is #1 on Amazon.de at the moment!
If you're aware of an official release in your country, let us know via a comment on this article (and specify whether it's CD or digital only). We'll keep a tab going…
Here are the different iTunes charts.
Roxwriter contributed to this article.
Three additional dates have been added to the ever growing World Tour 2011 (and others confirmed):
May 20 World Trade Center, Dubai, United Arab Emirates – confirmed
May 25 Macka Kucukciftlik Park, Istanbul, Turkey – added
June 24 Ingolstadt, Germany – removed
June 25 Neckarsulm, Germany – removed
July 14 Locarno, Switzerland – confirmed
Meanwhile, the concert in Gothenburg, Sweden on July 24 was close to being sold out so it has been moved to Slottsskogsvallen, which is a much larger venue! Tickets already purchased will, of course, remain valid.
EDITOR'S NOTE: As the holiday season winds down, The Daily Roxette's News Editor Thomas Evensson was recently afforded the opportunity to sit down for a chat with Per Gessle. As you'll see, with a new single and album out in the very near future – not to mention a World Tour – they had no shortage of things to talk about! —LEO
STOCKHOLM - With a few logs burning in the fireplace, Per offers a glass of glögg (mulled wine) as we sit down in a couple of comfortable chairs by the fireplace. On the table, there's a plate of pepparkakor (traditional Swedish Christmas ginger cookies).
The Daily Roxette: So Per… a new album, a brand spanking fresh single, an upcoming world tour. The fans say ‘woohoo’, what say you?
Per Gessle: I say ‘Yee-Haa!’. We're very pleased with the new album. We decided early on to try to make a classic Roxette record and I think we succeeded. Also, since Marie is very motivated and up for any challenge these days, a full scale Roxette tour feels just right.
We certainly long for these upcoming shows!! You know me, I love playing music with these people. And to have the benefit of the Rox crowds all over the planet you can't help but to shout ‘Yee-Haa!’
TDR: Roxette has been on a long, long road from its first attempts of a comeback starting with “One Wish” back in 2006 to this most recent decision to once again step back into the limelight. We saw the TV-shows Per, we saw Night Of The Proms, we saw last summer's concerts, but we also noticed the breaks. How did you and Marie finally find this path back?
PG: You have to remember that when Marie fell ill she only had about a five percent chance of surviving. Only one-out-of-twenty survive what she’s gone through! When you think about that it's almost a miracle that we're sitting here discussing a new Rox album and a new Rox tour. You have to keep that in mind. I certainly do. So every step of the way since 2002 has been dictated by what Marie wanted and what she was able to do. Slowly but surely she has built up enough self-confidence and motivation to start thinking in larger terms: concerts, media, blah blah blah… I can see how she improves with every thing she does. After a couple of days in the studio she started to deliver magic like in the past. It’s the same on stage. I'm sure you noticed that if you saw, for instance, Night of the Proms show #2 compared to show #35!!! It feels so good! [One can see Per is very happy about this as his face radiates when speaking about Marie.]
TDR: Yes, it is incredible to see the progress in her performance and she obviously enjoys the love she receives from the fans. Yet most of the promo stuff is being done by you. In the old times, the focus was more on Marie, now you're the face in front of the cameras. Do you think your solo career has given you more self-esteem? What will the consequences for the public image of Roxette be next year?
PG: Well, I don’t agree. I’ve always been the one doing by far the most promo jobs. Basically because Marie always hated it. I didn’t have a problem with it in the past and I still don’t. But it’s pretty natural for the media to focus on Marie since she’s the lead singer and therefore the main character in the band. I don’t know what’s gonna happen in the future but I’m pretty sure Marie won’t do that many interviews since she’s really tired of talking about her illness. And that’s what most media people want to discuss. Not my brilliant chord progressions. [He winks.]
TDR: That’s hard to understand, those D-E-A progressions… out of this world! And now that the new single “She’s Got Nothing On (But the Radio)” is out any day, which of your own footsteps are you tracing (if any)? Did you have a certain sound in your mind when you planned this album?
[Per takes a sip of his glögg and thinks.]
PG: Yea, like I said we wanted the songs to get the classic Roxette treatment. However, we didn't use Jonas [Isacsson] or Pelle [Alsing] on the record. We started out with Jens [Jansson] on drums, which felt great. But after the summer break we decided to focus on programming when it came to the backing tracks. We tried to get Anders [Herrlin] onboard to guide us through the manuals but he was so busy with his movies – he’s doing plenty of soundtracks – so he couldn't come by. Next time, maybe?
TDR: Yes by all means, bring in ‘The Herrlin’ next time around!
PG: Also, most of the guitar parts are played by Chris [Lundquist]. He can play things I hear in my head but can't play myself. Story of my life…
TDR: But you have a party in your head, Chris probably doesn’t? Talking about Chris, can we expect another head-banging guitar solo by the born-again hippie this time?
PG: Lots of them, I hope. Chris is one of the world’s best players. He’s got that unique talent combining an out-of-this-world musicality with an equally out-of-this-world emotional antenna. That’s very, very rare. Most musicians of Chris’ caliber are just technical virtuosos… brilliant but boring. Chris has that gut feeling, that very generous pop heart that is extremely rewarding to hear beating. When he’s groovin’ together with Clarence [Öfwerman], we’re talking Super League.
[Per switches topics and begins to talk about the – in TDR’s opinion – rocky, sleeve design… how both he and Marie loves Pär Wickholm’s work.]
PG: He’s got a certain attitude which is attractive. I love, for instance, his ‘Party Crasher’ sleeve so we told him to do something special, a collage, starting out with approximately 200 pics he received from Marie and I. He did a great job as expected. He's a charmer.
TDR: Yes, the Gessle over Europe sleeve is a masterpiece! Speaking of albums, who came up with the title Charm School? Any subliminal meaning?
PG: Well, one of the main songs was called “Charm School.” It was a killer track, possibly strong enough to be the core of the album. But like in most love stories things sometimes go wrong. The production went crazy and ugly. We re-recorded it but lost interest after a couple of days, so it had to go through a very painful and slow death. However, I'm sure it will pop up somewhere else.” [Per gives a mischievous smile.] “Some songs seem to have nine lives, you know…
TDR: We do know! There must be dozens of songs that fans have heard of that just disappeared. What is the old saying? ‘Good demos never die; they just go to the drawer and mature?’ Maybe you’ll release it as a B-side? We're happy about everything that turns a CD-single into maxi singles! Have other singles been chosen already?
PG: No, not yet. We’re still trying to convince an upcoming partner in the U.S. that we exist so we’re waiting for more feedback.
TDR: How were you inspired, if that’s the right word, for writing material for this album?
PG: Basically I wrote for Marie. Starting at square one, I think we tried every song with her as the lead singer. But some songs she didn’t feel comfortable with, so I sang those instead. Or we scrapped them. It’s pretty easy going. For me, the whole idea with Roxette is to use Marie's voice as much as possible otherwise it will only become another Per Gessle project. [Per is excited now.] And I love the fact that she's ‘taking over’ the songs, making them her own. For instance, there's a ballad, “No One Makes It On Her Own,” which suddenly gets a whole new meaning and touches you on a totally different level than it did when it was sung by me (on the demo). She’s got that rare power. A great gift.
TDR: Amazing! Did you try to get influenced by contemporary music in order to achieve maximum chart success?
PG: No, not at all. We never discuss chart success or "we have to have a single" anymore. We're way past that. We're very aware that contemporary radio such as Radio One in the UK or P3 in Sweden won't touch our new material since we're old enough to be the programmers' parents.
The main reason for doing a new album after all these years is because we can!!! I still love to write songs, Marie loves to sing them. So I guess in a way Charm School is made to please ourselves. But, of course, we know we have a huge fan base all over the world, our music has touched zillions of people in the past, and still does, so the new stuff is made with love for them as well. We know that a lot of folks are looking forward to this record and have waited for a Rox return for many years. It's a blessing to have those ties with people and we'll never forget that.
[Per is as always underestimating himself. This reporter thinks "Radio" sounds pretty young and ready for the charts of this planet.]
TDR: Was there no pressure from the record company to follow a certain route?
PG: You’re joking! We never play our music for the record company until the project’s closed. We used to do that in the early days… we had to because we spent so much of their money in the studio. I’ve been writing songs professionally for more than 30 years, if they don’t trust me and my ambitions they signed the wrong guy. And I've never really disappointed them, have I?
TDR: Well there was this hrrrm Heartland album… just kidding!